Decades ago, Lamborghini unleashed its very first concept SUV upon the world. At the Beijing Motor Show this year, they proudly unveiled their brand new concept SUV, the Urus. Big and bawdy with distinctive edges, there’s no mistaking this for anything but a Lamborghini; but I have mixed feelings about the newest bull on the block. We really shouldn’t get too judgemental since it won’t be available for purchase until 2015, and the design may change by then. They probably wanted to confirm there would be a market for the Urus, and indeed there is one if the fawning automotive journalists are any kind of benchmark. I’d even wager that there’s already lengthy waiting list for their first super luxury SUV. That’s the only explanation for the concept model’s surprise reveal despite numerous denials of its existence by the manufacturer.
Supercar brands are all slowly diversifying their lines to include an SUV model. Porsche has its Cayenne. Bentley revealed what they’re calling an ultra-luxury concept SUV this year at the Geneva Motor Show, called the EXP 9 F. Maserati’s concept Kubang/Cinqueporte debuted at the 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show. Mass production luxury lines like BMW, Audi, Infiniti and Lexus all have make SUV’s and/or Crossovers. So it’s not strange that Lamborghini intends to invade that market. Indeed, it will be lucrative for them but will the Urus usher in a new era for the iconic brand or dilute its prestige? For me, Lamborghini has always meant one thing: super cars. They’ve produced models of engineering genius and aesthetics for years. A Lamborghini is neither subtle nor subdued. It’s beautiful and brilliant but obnoxiously so. We can’t help stare as it mocks us with its fabulousness performance, especially when owners opt for bright colours like yellow, orange and green. It’s a status symbol to be sure with no shortage of prospective owners. Consider their one-of-a-kind Aventador J was snapped up for a cool $2.75 million even before its debut at the Geneva Motor Show.
My moot grimaces aside, the Urus will probably be the must-have vehicle in a few years. That is for those who can afford its prospective price of over $200k. They’ll make regular folks rubberneck in places like school and shopping mall car parks. Hopefully they’ll also tear through forests and deserts for international rally events. Heck, I might even change my mind when the final product finally rolls out, and its subsequent variations. I certainly wouldn’t suck my teeth in disgust if there’s one parked in my driveway with a big bow on it. In the meantime, Ferrari fans can breathe a sigh of relief, as they have confirmed that the SUV and luxury sedan markets are not one on their radar. I should think so, unless they want the ghost of Papa Enzo to tear up that lovely factory in Maranello. I guess some car makers know when to draw the line. Do you hear that Mr. Pagani?